National Newswatch

The SNC affair is now an existential threat to the Trudeau government

Mar 4 2019 — Jen Gerson — It is at this point in the scandal, with the resignation of one of Justin Trudeau’s most competent and respected cabinet ministers, that a professional political speculator must begin to ask whether the Prime Minister can survive all the way to the fall election. It is hard to imagine a more damaging defection than that […]

Justin Trudeau, imposter

Mar 4 2019 — Paul Wells — The story a few Liberals were telling privately, in the early hours after Jody Wilson-Raybould delivered her extraordinary testimony to the Commons justice committee about the endless procession of men who tried to make her cancel a criminal trial for SNC-Lavalin, was that she just didn’t get it. The former attorney general is a nice […]

How a core member of Team Trudeau became the PM’s greatest threat

Mar 3 2019 — John Geddes — Jody Wilson-Raybould has a way of making an impression. Oddly enough, for a politician, she often makes it in private. There was the day in 2011, back when Wilson-Raybould was heading the B.C. Assembly of First Nations, that she ran into former prime minister Paul Martin. He later said she treated him to a “brilliant […]

It’s time for Justin Trudeau to put his cards on the table

Mar 1 2019 — Andrew MacDougall — It’s another day, and another defence for the Liberals on SNC-Lavalin. For those of you who are algorithmically shielded from bad Liberal news, we’ve now moved from “false” after the story broke weeks ago to “yeah, well, you might think 11 people having multiple meetings or phone calls with the non-partisan attorney general or her […]

The moral catastrophe of Justin Trudeau

Feb 27 2019 — Paul Wells — What Jody Wilson-Raybould described today is a sickeningly smug protection racket and it should make us all question what we’re willing to tolerate. The dangerous files are never the obscure ones. Scandals don’t happen in the weird little corners of government, in amateur sport or in crop science. They happen on the issues a prime […]

Jody Wilson-Raybould has Trudeau in checkmate

Feb 24 2019 — Andrew MacDougall — “Is Jody Wilson-Raybould going to burn my government to the ground?” It’s the question Justin Trudeau must surely be asking as his former attorney general and justice minister prepares to “speak her truth” this week at the justice committee on the question of SNC-Lavalin. If the dribs and drabs of information appearing on the front […]

How many times did Jody Wilson-Raybould need to say ‘No’?

Feb 24 2019 — Anne Kingston — Since its outset, l’affair SNL-Lavalin has been framed as a “he said, she said.” More accurately, the messy scandal arising from allegations that the PMO pressured then-justice minister and attorney general Jody Wilson-Raybould to give a prosecutorial break to the powerful Quebec company has been a “he, he, he-said,” while “she” consults with her lawyer […]

Where SNC-Lavalin’s push for deferred prosecution came up short

Feb 22 2019 — Nick Taylor-Vaisey — As an omnibus bill that enshrined in law what are called “deferred prosecution agreements” wound its way through Parliament last year, SNC-Lavalin was busy lobbying MPs, senators and government officials. The beleaguered company’s efforts bore fruit, as Bill C-74 became law on June 21—offering the Montreal engineering company hope of being given an alternative to […]

Butts is gone, but #LavScam rolls on

Feb 19 2019 — Andrew Mayeda — Pity Justin Trudeau. Resigning your best friend to the political scrap heap can’t have been an easy day at the office. Especially when that best friend has been the best brain at your disposal during your meteoric rise to the leadership of the Liberal Party, and then Canada. Losing Gerry Butts, as Trudeau did yesterday, […]

Gerald Butts: If thy right hand offend thee, pluck it out

Feb 18 2019 — Paul Wells — At any other time it’d be interesting to entertain a few notions of comparative PMO staffing. Brian Mulroney and Stephen Harper shook up their senior staff regularly: Mulroney’s principal secretaries included Peter White, Tom Trbovich, Michel Roy and Hugh Segal; Harper made more frequent changes to his chiefs of staff but when Ray Novak moved […]

The hole that Gerry Butts leaves behind

Feb 18 2019 — Stephen Maher — The second act of l’affaire SNC-Lavalin could be devastating for Trudeau, and it’s not clear he’ll be better off without his trusted advisor. Last week, I wrote here that Justin Trudeau needed a fall guy to take the blame in l’affaire SNC-Lavalin. Today, we learned who that fall guy is: principal secretary Gerald Butts, a […]

Justin Trudeau, Jody Wilson-Raybould and cabinet secrecy

Feb 15 2019 — John Geddes — Around federal political and bureaucratic circles, the words “cabinet secrecy” and “cabinet confidentiality” are often wielded like magic spells. They evoke a mysterious power that echos in the corridors of Parliament Hill, as if just speaking them aloud means certain matters must never, ever be spoken of in public. Prime Minister Justin Trudeau uttered the […]

Justin Trudeau’s credibility gap on SNC-Lavalin

Feb 15 2019 — Paul Wells — A new poll shows that among Canadians who are following the controversy, nearly three quarters think Wilson-Raybould has the most credibility. A large majority of people following the controversy over Justin Trudeau, Jody Wilson-Raybould and SNC-Lavalin say the former justice minister has the most credibility, a new online poll says.

The incredible miscalculation by Trudeau and co.

Feb 13 2019 — Stephen Maher — Former attorney general Peter MacKay told the Toronto Sun this week that the police should be called in to investigate the SNC-Lavalin affair, because someone may have obstructed justice. “When I was prosecuting cases, if a politician had ever called me up, I would have put down the phone and called the police,” said MacKay, […]